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Chapter 6: Cages of Gold

I said to these people, “Don’t make distinctions.” Let me remain simply a nobody, with no power, with no domination. Because every subtle desire to be special is a desire for power. You gather money to be powerful, you go into politics to be powerful, you search for enlightenment again for power. Enlightened you will be worshipped. Perhaps enlightenment is the most dangerous disease of all, because who wants to be unenlightened once he has become enlightened? - except my people who become enlightened every day. They never tire of it; the next day again they are here.

Gurudayal Singh is laughing. Because he is my ancientmost sannyasin, he has become so many times enlightened! But the next day when he wakes up he thinks, “Enlightenment is not difficult. One can become enlightened any way, any day, any time. Just a little more enjoyment around the world - enlightenment can wait!”

It is not something that is far away. Once you have known it, you know it is there. Then just be ordinary, simple. In that simplicity is purity and joy and a laughter like a child; and a glory and a splendor that the whole existence pours on such innocence.

A Zen haiku:

Every man has beneath his feet,
ground enough to do zazen on.

You don’t have to go anywhere. Wherever you are, you have enough ground under your feet and you can become enlightened. You can do the meditation, it does not have to be in a certain holy place.

But even people like Moses would not pass the test set by this haiku poet. When Moses went to meet God on Mount Sinai.In the first place the whole idea of meeting God is absolutely imagination. He must have been asleep. In a dream he must have gone up the mountain, because thousands of people have gone to the mountain before and after, and God has never been found there. Still people go on thinking that it is a holy place. It was a special concession to Moses that God met him on Mount Sinai. It is strange how he knew that he would be at that moment on Mount Sinai. He had no phone call from him, no letter, no communication of any kind. But he met God on Sinai - that’s what the Old Testament says. As a metaphor it is beautiful, but religions turn every metaphor into factuality, and then it becomes a superstition.

Moses approaches God.and what is God? A fire is burning inside a green bush and the bush is still green. Flames are coming out of the bush just like branches, flowers. With those flowers and branches and leaves the flames are coming out. This can be a beautiful metaphor, that life is nothing but fire. But as he approached the bush, somebody shouted from the bush, “Moses take off your shoes! You are on holy ground.”

These kinds of metaphors have proved to be very dangerous. It is beautiful to see God as flames.certainly cool, because they are not burning the leaves, the flowers, the bush. On the contrary they are nourishing it, dancing with its branches. But, “Take off your shoes, this is holy ground,” is a dangerous statement. That means other ground is not holy.

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